Even though I have been standing in my mom’s shoes for only a year as yet, I can see it probably started long ago, when simple things like she wanting to hold my hand but me wanting to walk it solo were the very beginnings of the rebellion that was to last us a lifetime.
Being the eldest means there’s always a war that you have waged with your parents that the ones after you will benefit from. You are the one who had to fight for the stay-out-late privileges, break in the phonecalls from boys idea, try to explain to them that mehndis start, not end at 11pm, that going out for coffee is not an outing that needs to be asked extensive permission in advance for. You have to fight for the right to a car- even if its your own, you have to assert your independence harder, explain what a college study trip is and eventually figure out how to tell them you have chosen who you want to marry. You are the one who gets blamed the most for setting an example but then also gets trusted the most to set that example.
Some days, I want to run to my mom with Nadi in tow because only she can make it all seem easy. And at other times, I want to run away from her, to try and prove to her that yes, I can do it all by myself and I don’t need anyone to hold my hand. Heh, I suppose not much has changed in 31 years except I am beginning to wish on many many levels, that I turn out to be even half as amazing a mom as mine has always been.